Racism, No Doubt, The Cause

AP offers a bit about “brain waste.” What is brain waste?

Montenegro [the Colombian-educated obstetrician who has not found work as a doctor from the Touching Anecdote Lede] is hardly unique, given the high U.S. unemployment rate these days. Her situation reflects a trend that some researchers call “brain waste” — a term applied to immigrants who were skilled professionals in their home countries, yet are stymied in their efforts to find work in the U.S. that makes full use of their education or training.

What contributes to brain drain? I mean, aside from the obvious xenophobia Americans-as-depicted-by-coastal-betters often imply (but this article does not inherently)?

Most of these immigrants wind up underemployed because of barriers like language, lack of access to job networks, or credentialing requirements that are different from those in other countries. Some are held back even further because they’re also in the U.S. illegally.

All right, then. If you don’t like the thought of a doctor who didn’t pass the United States credentialing system, who can’t speak English, and who entered or remains in the country illegally….

Well, you’re probably a racist.

Do I think some people in this country are underemployed. Yes. Do I think some credentialing systems are rent-seeking by the credentialed? Hell, yes. Do I think it’s a special problem for immigrants? No.

Welcome to the country. Now suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous connectionalism like the rest of us, and if it bothers you, help us work to change it.

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